Food & Farm News
» May 15, 2013 «
High feed costs, competition from imports and other factors have challenged the American lamb business, according to the U.S. Agriculture Department. The department said it plans to work with sheep ranchers and marketing experts to help encourage Americans to seek out U.S. lamb. The goal is to ensure the long-term health of sheep ranching. California ranks second in the nation in sheep production, with more than a half-million head of sheep in the state.
Demand for asparagus has been increasing throughout the spring, but farmers say they've had problems meeting that demand. Growers say the asparagus crop is smaller than anticipated this year. Early in the season, farmers held back on harvesting asparagus because there was little demand, but now farmers say they can't find enough workers to help harvest, sort and pack the crop. They say that it is too early to know the full impact on the crop.
California continues to lead the nation in production of floriculture crops, which include flowers, flowering plants, bedding plants and other products. A new report shows that California accounts for one-quarter of the nation's wholesale floriculture production. The wholesale value of flowers and other floriculture crops grown in the state stood at $974 million last year … down slightly from the year before.
No room for a raised-bed garden? No problem! The folks behind the University of California master gardener program in Napa County shared suggestions for ways to grow food in a confined space. For example, 'Pixie' cabbages, 'Tom Thumb' lettuces, and 'Green Fingers' eggplants all grow well in small containers on apartment patios. The experts also suggest using planters with wheels, so the plants are easily moved in and out of sunlight on balconies.Top